How to Deal with the Feeling of Longing

Who would have thought that I would use a topic in my blog about a feeling that my dog causes? Today, I was reminded of the difficulty of dealing with longing because of a decision we have to make concerning our dog.

This morning, I saw my wife crying, facing her computer while carrying our dog on her lap. She was crying silently, and when I asked her why, she sobbed even more and told me she was not willing to part with our dog. Since the possibility of conducting face-to-face training events has become higher, frequent travel is apparent. Hence the decision to leave our fur baby with my parents-in-law. 

Upon seeing her emotional state, I thought of how I usually cope with the feeling of longing or missing someone or something. Because of my chosen career path, I had a lot of experiences in the matter.  

My first ever experience was when I decided to leave my hometown to grow more in my career. I had to endure more than the difficulty of adapting to a new place – I had to take the longing I felt for my family and friends. Then, when I got married, I always had local and international travels because of my work and continuing education. Even just for a few days, being away from home never got easy. Getting over or dealing with such a feeling is never easy, but I found ways to endure. How?

  1. I remind myself of the why. Remembering why I need to be away or leave gives me the energy to proceed after feeling down from loneliness. 
  2. I socialize and get to know the people in my new surroundings. Acquainting myself with the people around me helps in lightening my mood. It always helps to know that there are people I can talk with and help take my mind away from the feeling of longing.
  3. I usually develop a hobby that could give me joy. Entertaining myself with fun activities also helps me keep myself from constantly thinking of those that I miss. 
  4. I ensure that communication is regular but not obsessive. Allotting time to update and check on loved ones really helps lessen the longing. Making sure that both parties agree on the timing of communications leaves little room for misunderstanding. 

While missing people, things, or places is an indicator of your love and care for them, you need to know how to deal with it so that it would not interfere with your productivity. 

This condition might not be serious for some, but it causes some people to give up on opportunities. Some cannot perform their work well. There are even those who cannot sleep nor eat well. So, I hope that the ways I enumerated here could help someone experiencing difficulty dealing with such feelings. 

How about you? How do you deal with the feeling of longing?



(Photo by Andrew Neel)

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5 Steps I Take When Confusion Strikes

Two weeks ago, I accidentally broke a valuable item owned by my wife. After her initial reaction of shock with a hint of disappointment, she laughed and told me that she should be happy because it would be replaced with a new one. From then on, she bugged me about the replacement. However, since we have a busy schedule, we did not have the time to take care of it right away. She had no choice but to wait. After a few days, I observed how she became less invested in the notion of me replacing the item. Then, suddenly, she told me that she no longer wanted me to replace it. She just wanted to have it fixed instead. When I asked her the reason, she said that she was now over her confusion. The long wait allowed her to think clearly and concluded that having it fixed is more advantageous than getting a new one since she loves and values the said item. In addition to that, it is a more practical decision. 

When I thought about it, she actually went through all the following steps, which I, myself, observe when I face a confusing situation:

  1. Take a breather. Taking a pause helps me clear my mind. It is the best first step to take when confused about something. You have to be aware that your emotions are high when you are in a state of confusion. Therefore, by stopping and refreshing your mind, you prevent yourself from making a rash decision that could lead to an undesirable result.
  2. Avoid thinking about or listening to negative conjectures. Keeping a positive mind is very important. This step is also the supposed result after you take a breather. Once you have taken a moment to relax your mind, you have to maintain your relaxed state and veer away from thinking of negative possibilities. Aside from that, you have to steer clear of people who might infect you with their negative assumptions.  
  3. Weigh your options. After ensuring that you are in the proper condition to make decisions, you can start thinking about the best action to take concerning the cause of your confusion. Being confused means that there are different choices. You got confused either because you have no idea what the options entail or because you like more than one of them. So, in a refreshed state of mind, carefully assess the different alternatives before you to identify which one is the best.  
  4. Ask for advice/opinions/suggestions. Indeed, it is essential not to listen to other people’s negativities, but it is still vital for you to ask for other people’s views regarding your choice. Learn to ask the right people. Seek advice from those who encourage and inspire you. You must accept that confusing situations need more than one mind to assess and overcome.  
  5. Strategize and plan for your next course of action. After finally deciding which option to choose, you start taking action towards your choice by planning. You still have to be careful and smart in your execution to ensure desirable outcomes. This step requires more of your patience.

As evidenced by the above anecdote, these steps could save you from regret, further disappointment, or heartache due to wrong decisions. My wife might not have intended it, but she followed all these steps and ended up choosing the best decision – having her valuable item fixed and asking me to buy a bigger one on her wish list (she used the yes-or-yes closing technique on me with this one!). 

What do you do when confusion strikes?



(Photo by Liviu Gorincioi)

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Motivating Myself Towards My Goals

Not everybody has goals. This is why many people cannot decide their directions. Not having goals does not necessarily mean having no dreams. I believe all of us have dreams; may they be plausible or unrealistic. Setting goals is an essential step to achieving your dreams, but getting worn out or waylaid is always a possibility, even when you are clear in your direction. 

In my journey, trials and tribulations keep popping here and there. Such challenges are sometimes almost impossible to overcome, and I would think I might not accomplish my goals. However, as I am constantly reminded that challenges are part of life, I embrace those challenging situations and keep moving forward with more and more determination. When I feel the situation is overwhelming, I make sure to keep myself motivated by:

  1. Doing my best to have a positive attitude every day. The moment I wake up in the morning, I make a conscious effort to take on a positive attitude by counting what I am grateful for. In addition, when I encounter troubles along the way, I do not dwell on them but find solutions instead. 
  2. Constantly reminding myself of my goals and mission. Thinking about the results I dream about never fails to lift my spirits when I feel exhausted or uninspired. So, I motivate myself to get up and keep going by reminding myself of my end goal. 
  3. Keeping a record of my accomplishments. Besides setting the goals I have for the day, I record all that I have completed at the end of the day. These records help me get my mood up when I have a hard time when I look back on them. 
  4. Celebrating each of my wins, big or small. Celebrating something good keeps me more excited. Marking success by celebrating them motivates me to work harder to achieve more victories.
  5. Surrounding myself with people who support me in any way. Since being alone sometimes leads people to think negative thoughts, especially when having a hard time, I find support from the people around me not to be overwhelmed with the challenges. I ask for help and allow them to support me in whatever way. 

While it is a daunting task to realize goals, it is also not impossible as long as you have the determination to make them happen. Keeping yourself motivated is the best way to keep you on the journey toward success. 

How about you? How do you keep yourself motivated to achieve your goals?



(Photo by Suliman Sallehi)

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Best Ways to Influence Others in Making the Best Choice

In our life journey, we are constantly faced with situations where we need to choose. Such conditions vary – from selecting the right clothes to choosing the right career path. Choosing is not always as easy as breathing because even choosing clothes takes a lot of time. Hence, we sometimes ask other people’s opinions or suggestions. However, as sapient beings, we choose what we believe is correct at the end of the day. 

Knowing that you can make your own choice, how do you feel when people force you to choose a path you do not want to follow? Or choose a belief that you disagree with? Wouldn’t you feel disrespected? I know how to feel strongly about something, like a belief or a notion. You wish to influence others to believe in what you believe because you think it is the best or the right thing to do. Such feeling is okay, and making your beliefs known to others is also okay because we are free to do so. We have to remember that other people have the same freedom that we have. If you feel offended when someone mocks your choices, others feel the same way when you mock them. Before judging someone and their choices, try putting yourself in their shoes first. Each of us has reasons for behaving the way we do, for doing things, choosing, and any action that we do, so we have no right to judge each other. So, how should we properly help others make the best choice without disrespecting them?

  1. Advocate for what you believe peacefully. Do not mock others’ beliefs by belittling them.
  2. Be an embodiment of what you believe. Show other people the goodness that results from it.  
  3. Encourage others to listen or know more about what you advocate but never force them. 
  4. Separate your relationship with each other from your differences in beliefs. Learn to compartmentalize. Do not ambush them or make them feel cornered to listen to you.

There are no significant results that come from something that is forced. Learn to help others make the right choice in the right and peaceful way. If, in the end, they still choose the other way, learn to accept and respect them and their preferences.  


(Photo by Andres  Ayrton)

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What to do While in a Waiting Game

There is a time for everything. Wait. We are often required to wait in our lives, but we usually do not have the patience to endure. We consider waiting as an ordeal, not an opportunity that it is. Oh, did I say opportunity? Yes, for me waiting is an opportunity to grow and more. While waiting, why don’t you:

  1. Do something productive. Occupying yourself with important tasks would make waiting worthwhile. You would not feel that you have wasted your time waiting for something. You might even thank yourself later for being productive while you still have the time, as what you are waiting for might lead you to be unable to do those tasks anymore, right? 
  2. Enjoy other activities. Instead of sulking and attracting more negative emotions, you should channel your energy towards other activities that you enjoy to lighten your mood. 
  3. Develop your knowledge and skills. When you are waiting for something that can be considered the next level, isn’t it better for you to be fully equipped? So, it would be a very appropriate use of time if you learn new things and develop your competencies while waiting so that you would be able to take on any challenges that come with the opportunity you desire. 
  4. Be hopeful by making a plan. Making a plan before diving into a new adventure is a smart move. Though conditions may change along the way, having a plan or plans could help you overcome obstacles or challenges faster and more efficiently. By making a plan, you are also being positive that what you are waiting for is possible to happen. 
  5. Be patient and let things unfold. Patience is a virtue. When you make it a rule to be patient, you also rid yourself of negativity. When you wait for something to happen, the only factor you control is yourself, while other factors should be allowed to happen on their own. Impatience might only lead to you doing things to hasten the process but end up spoiling everything. 

See? Waiting is not bad at all. It is an opportunity that brings many more opportunities in small and big packages. Yet, these opportunities might be blocked by the feelings of frustration, disappointment, and impatience of waiting. Therefore, change your perspective and look for the silver lining in the game of waiting.  




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